In-situ sampling of dust and energetic particles
LASP’s particle detectors allow for incredibly accurate, in-situ sampling of energetic particles as well as minute specks of dust encountered in space. We’re one of only a few institutions in the world to fly dust detectors on sounding rockets as well as space missions like NASA’s New Horizons, AIM and the upcoming Europa Clipper to observe terrestrial, interplanetary, cosmic, and lunar dust.
Our engineers have also developed electric and magnetic field digital signal-processing electronics for planetary, solar, and Earth-orbiting missions, including MMS, THEMIS, and Van Allen Probes.
Of special note is the Venetia Burney Student Dust Counter (VBSDC), an instrument aboard New Horizons. This is the first science instrument on a planetary mission to be entirely designed, built, tested, and operated by students under the supervision of LASP professionals.